Located across the
street from Starbucks
in Downtown Milford, MI.
It’s funny, or strange, how some groups choose to label themselves; where they go to brand themselves. Consider these three examples:
“When the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was a delight to the eyes, and that the tree was desirable to make one wise, she took from its fruit and ate; and she gave also to her husband with her, and he ate.” (Genesis 3:6 NAS95)
This is perhaps the most devastating verse in all of Scripture, describing the most devastating act forthe whole human race. I’m not sure that it’s an image that we should be proud of, or parade around. Yes, we are a fallen race. But I’m not proud of it.
A competitor has come out this past week in the “smart” phone market, the Amazon “Fire.” They already have a competing pad, called the Kindle Fire. I wonder, “where did they get that name?” I was reading my Bible this week, and came across this verse:
Look, all you who kindle a fire, who encircle yourselves with firebrands; walk in the light of your fire and in the firebrands you have lit! This is what you’ll get from My hand: you will lie down in a place of torment.
This verse describes those who have attached themselves to their idols. That by which they live, is that by which they will die.
“But may it never be that I would boast, except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, through which the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world.” (Galatians 6:14 NAS95)
Certainly the cross is central to the Christian message. You cannot adequately explain Jesus without explaining the place of the cross. And followers of Jesus are those who bear the cross (Luke 14:27), enduring hardship (2 Timothy 4:5) and, like Jesus, despising the shame (Hebrews 12:2).
But the identity of the Christian is really found in the branding of the Spirit. It is this indwelling Spirit that brings about the character of Christ in us. Without the Spirit, there is no life-in-Christ (Ephesians 2:6,7), and no Christ-in-me (Galatians 2:20). When we walk with (by) the Spirit, we are not walking in the flesh (Galatians 5:16-24). There is a clear difference. It is a Christian “spirit” that should be recognizable as Christ-like.
Because the true image of Christianity is not lots of crosses, but Spirit-led followers of Jesus.